The last decade has seen major advances in the neurobiology of pain, primarily resulting from a deeper understanding of the way in which pain signals are coded and processed in the nervous system. This volume in the Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology series is the first book for many years to present an integrated overview of the current state of research into the neurobiology of chronic and acute pain. While recent molecular aspects of nociception are covered in some detail, the book also emphasises the importance of viewing the pain experience as the co-ordinated response of many different areas of the nervous system. The molecular advances are set in the context of the neurobiological system of pain processing. The appropriate behavioural response to injury can therefore be thought of as the result of the integration of information processed within areas of the brain concerned with cognition, affect, sensory discrimination and movement. Chapters cover recent advances in nociceptor transduction mechanisms, nociceptor plasticity and the biochemical anatomy of pain pathways. Other contributions are concerned with the development of pain systems and with the central processing of nociceptive information studied with brain imaging techniques. Several chapters additionally cover the mechanisms of clinically important pain states such as neuropathic pain, cancer related pain and migraine. This volume presents a state-of-the-art account of the neurobiological basis of pain, edited and written by the leading scientists in this field.